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Rachel Maddow: Excellent Segment on Nuclear Option w/ Howard Dean: 'The Country's at Stake Here'

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Hissyspit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-11-10 10:47 PM
Original message
Rachel Maddow: Excellent Segment on Nuclear Option w/ Howard Dean: 'The Country's at Stake Here'
Edited on Thu Feb-11-10 11:47 PM by Hissyspit
 
Run time: 07:53
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0wBpVv5YYE
 
Posted on YouTube: February 12, 2010
By YouTube Member:
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Posted on DU: February 12, 2010
By DU Member: Hissyspit
Views on DU: 2605
 
MSNBC The Rachel Maddow Show - 11 February 2009:

MADDOW: "In the spring of 2005, Senate Republicans, led by then-Majority Leader Bill Frist, started talking about something called the "nuclear option." The nuclear option was a put-up or shut-up ultimatum to Senate Democrats. Allow up-or-down no-filibuster votes on President Bush's judicial nominees OR ELSE. Or else Republicans would kill the filibuster. They would just get rid of it.

Well, now... you know, Republicans never really had to go nuclear, because Democrats were very afraid of this threat. Some of them went into 'I'm Afraid' deal-making mode at the time. Fourteen Senators - seven Republicans and seven Democrats - then struck a deal to allow President Bush's judicial nominees to go forward. Crisis averted. The filibuster lived. Bush got his judges. And Democrats kept the filibuster alive, although they promised not to use it very much.

When Republicans threatened to go nuclear on Democrats back then, it's because Democrats, they said, were abusing the filibuster. Here's what that looked like in that Congress - 54 filibusters when Democrats were in the minority at that time. Then when the Republicans became the minority in 2007... BOING! 112 filibusters.

Republicans now have a de facto standing filibuster on practically everything. They've made it so that passing anything in the Senate requires 60 votes. A supermajority every time. This situation has never existed before.

This was not the situation in ANY previous Congress ever. Really. I know that Beltway reporting always makes it seem like '60's normal. This is the way it's always been. Democrats did it too when they were in the minority.'

It is not true. This really has never happened before in the history of the U.S. Senate. When Republicans were mad about Democratic filibusters in 2005 and they threatened to kill the filibuster altogether, Democrats were doing NOTHING, anywhere near as extreme as what is being done now.

And so, finally, after starting to figure out that this is a problem, it's Democrats now who are coming around to a nuclear state of mind."

VP BIDEN (VIDEO): "I've never seen a time when the operating norm to get anything passed was a supermajority of 60 votes. No matter what the bill is, it's filibustered. It's required to get 60 votes. You can't rule by a supermajority. You can't govern if you require a supermajority."

MADDOW: "That man is both the Vice President and the President of the Senate, don't forget, who would have a key role to play in setting or changing Senate rules.

Even long-time defenders of the filibuster, like Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut, are now acknowledging that the Senate has become, in Sen. Dodd's words, 'a dysfunctional institution,' describing Republicans current use of the filibuster as 'abusive.'

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is also sounding the alarm, telling Roll Call newspaper 'a Constitutional majority is 51 votes ... Is there never anything that can be done without 60 votes? ... It isn't legitimate in terms of passing legislation.'

Speaker Pelosi noted that more than 200 bills that have passed the House are bottled up in the Senate now, a vast majority of which got more than 50 Republican votes when they passed the House. Today we move a bit

(Discusses Sen. Tom Harkin's new plan to break filibuster. Harkin calls filibuster abuse 'unprecedented.')

An as the Republicans get ready to cry foul over what Senator Harkin is trying to do, they should check the archives of themselves from back when they tried to go nuclear a few years ago.

SEN. MITCH McCONNELL (2005 VIDEO): "Let's get back to the way the Senate operated for over 200 years - up or down votes on the President's nominee, no matter who the President is, no matter who's in control of the Senate..."

MADDOW: "Sen. McConnell, there calling for up-or-down votes on nominees no matter who's in control. This week President Obama's nominee to head up the National Labor Relations Board went before the Senate. His nomination was killed when 33 Senators voted to filibuster him. Thirty-three Senators voting to block an up-or-down vote, including Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell."

SEN. MITCH McCONNELL (2005 VIDEO): "... up or down votes on the President's nominee, no matter who the President is, no matter who's in control of the Senate..."

MADDOW: "Starts with 'H,' four syllables, rhymes with 'Zypocrisy.'

- snip -

Joining us now is someone whom I suspect MAY disagree with me on this, former Chairman of the Democratic Party, former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, Gov. Dean, good to see you. Thank you."

DEAN: "Well, I only mildly disagree with you, Rachel. I'm always in favor of anything nuclear revolving Republicans. They are so irresponsible, they really... honestly, I've said this for a long time, they put the good of their party ahead of the good of the country, and when that happens they don't deserve to be in office anymore, and I think we're there now.

- snip -

"It will help some focusing on Republican obstructionism, because the Republicans are obstructionists. They have nothing to offer. They haven't offered anything.

- snip -

Our problem is we're not tough enough. If George Bush had been President of the United States and wanted health care reform, an unlikely scenario, but if he had wanted it, it would have been on his desk in eight months, by August, because George Bush used reconciliation, the budget process, to pass everything with 51 votes, five times. We haven't used it once. We haven't shown the spine to do that, and we need, once again, a spinal transplant in the Democratic Party to play hardball.

This is, the country's at stake here. This isn't about Republican versus Democratic anymore. This is about whether we want to move forward and have real reform or whether we want to let a small ideological minority screw up the country so they can take power again and I don't think we ought to put up with that."

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travelingtypist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-11-10 11:05 PM
Response to Original message
1. Dean Grayson 2012.
Dr. Dean is so right it's scary.
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tomm2thumbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-11-10 11:07 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. omg, that sounds so good it's scary

Democrats FOR Democrats, BY Democrats.
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knixphan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 03:39 AM
Response to Reply #3
11. How f'ing awesome would THAT ticket be?
Seconded.
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tomm2thumbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-11-10 11:06 PM
Response to Original message
2. makes me wonder if Tim Kaine has been effective on any level thus far

has anyone even heard diddley-squat from him about anything? Just asking, because I sure hear a lot from that Steele fella, even when his message is dumber than a box of hair, but am hard pressed to see anything Kaine out there at all.

Educate me if I'm completely barking up the wrong tree here...
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wroberts189 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 12:36 AM
Response to Reply #2
6. No you are right on spot..nobody even knows his damn name.




Yet Dean.. who no longer has the job is out there fighting every week.

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wroberts189 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 12:24 AM
Response to Original message
4. If George Bush had wanted health care reform.. been on his desk in eight months, knr
Edited on Fri Feb-12-10 12:24 AM by wroberts189

Dean:

"If George Bush had been President of the United States and wanted health care reform, an unlikely scenario, but if he had wanted it, it would have been on his desk in eight months,"
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Repealer Donating Member (6 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 10:52 AM
Response to Reply #4
16. GOP Counts On Poor Memory
The GOP is hilariously funny when their current propaganda against the Demos is compared with what they did under Bush II.

I clearly remember Bush using hundreds of "executive orders" to get what he wanted. Bush also added thousands of "signing statements" in an attempt to warp laws he didn't like.

The GOP paid no attention to polls or anything resembling common sense. ie. Bush appointed an anti-enviromentalist to run the EPA and so on. No excuses. No appeal to majority rule. Edicts from the White House, threats of vetoes and ingrained greed and stupidity were their guiding lights.

Anthem Insurance jumped the gun and has offered a perfect opportunity to deep six any futile attempts at biparisanship. Even teabaggers are given pause by 39% increases. And if we are talking about "death panels" Anthem is at the top of the list.


Now the GOP seeks to bluff the Demos into paralysis by pretending that using the NUCLEAR OPTION to shut down their Filibuster game is dirty pool.

I say smash them flat and run them out of office when the new policies are met with overwhelming public approval.
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wroberts189 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 12:26 AM
Response to Original message
5. This is a *must* watch. nt
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wroberts189 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 01:35 AM
Response to Original message
7. Kick...no more comments on this??? nt
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meowomon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 03:12 AM
Response to Original message
8. Must see this
But I don't think they should get rid of filibuster.
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burning rain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 03:15 AM
Response to Original message
9. Maddow's on fire regarding the filibuster issue.
She's my buddy.
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wroberts189 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 03:19 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. Thx.. finally another kick to this. People you NEED to watch this! nt
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democracy1st Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 07:10 AM
Response to Original message
12. Happy to K & R this
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ProgressOnTheMove Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 08:11 AM
Response to Original message
13. I wouldn't call it a failed institution more hostile takeover, that can be intervened.
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HillbillyBob Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
14. I saw last night.
Maybe we should co opt RM to run for something anything!
Tim Kaine?! who dat?
I like the idea of a Dean Grayson or vice versa ticket.
Like we could actually take over the peoples party from the corpses.
Some say all we do is bitch. Well when we do get out there and protest we get no coverage but the media whores sure as hell cover the teabaggers.
I do write letters to the editor (got notice that my letter to Sens Burr & Hagan, Rep Miller will be published in the Greensboro News & Observer sometime this week RE: corps are not people) I sign petitions make calls, not very often as I am getting very hard of hearing. I am disabled and do not have dependable transport so its not like I can hop in the car and go protest standing for any length of time.
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Repealer Donating Member (6 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
15. How Nuclear Option Works
If the Demos can get 51 votes together they can pass every bill they want and the GOP can jump in the lake for all the good it will do them.

The Republicans used the NUCLEAR OPTION in 2005 to get their judicial appointments approved, so they have no come back when the tables are turned.

Are the Demos stupid or are they just Republicans in disguise.

Running the country is not an exercise in collegiality, but a maximum use of the sheer POWER your party can muster.



NUCLEAR OPTION http://uspolitics.about.com/od/usgovernment/a/filibuster.htm
In 2005, then Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist threatened to end Democratic filibuster of judicial nominees by something called the "nuclear option." It is actually a series of steps designed to bypass the two-thirds vote requirement to change rules:

1. The Senate moves to vote on a controversial nominee.
2. At least 41 Senators call for filibuster.
3. The Senate Majority Leader raises a point of order, saying debate has gone on long enough and that a vote must be taken within a certain time frame. (Current Senate rules requires a cloture vote at this point.)
4. The Vice President -- acting as presiding officer -- sustains the point of order.
5. A Republican Senator appeals the decision.
6. A Democratic Senator moves to table the motion on the floor (the appeal).
7. This vote - to table the appeal - is procedural and cannot be subjected to a filibuster; it requires only a majority vote (in case of a tie, the Vice President casts the tie-breaking vote).
8. With debate ended, the Senate can vote on the issue at hand; this vote requires only a majority of those voting. The filibuster has effectively been closed with a majority vote instead of a three-fifths vote.
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Repealer Donating Member (6 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 11:13 AM
Response to Original message
17. Are Demos Wimps Or Republicans In Disguise
The Demos better stop acting like wimps. Refusing to use the NUCLEAR OPTION is just plain suicidal. If they let the GOP shut down every worthwhile reform, they deserve to be voted out of office for sheer stupidity. I cannot help wondering if the Demos are really Republicans in disguise.

The Demos have a great opportunity to wreck the GOP forever. The Anthem Insurance scam comes at a perfect time to blast the GOP out of the game for many years. I don't know what possesses Anthem execs to hit the public with a 39% premium increase during a health care debate, but the timing is exceedingly stupid. All that needs to be done is to brand the GOP with Anthem policies and we'll see how long voters stick with their greed based policies. Now we see who is running the real death panels.

If the Demos do not use the NUCLEAR OPTION to get majority approved legislation passed, I'm finished with them
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EmeraldCityGrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-12-10 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
18. K&R
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